New Zealand Prime Minister Admits Drug Prices Will Rise Under TPP — Leaves Out The Part About More People Dying
by Mike Masnick, Tech Dirt
Thu, Jul 30th 2015
As we’re in the middle of crunch time for the final TPP negotiations, New Zealand’s Prime Minister John Key has finally admitted what many experts have been saying for years — that under the TPP, drug prices will undoubtedly rise, because it extends monopoly protections on important medicines. Key tries to play this off as no big deal, because it’s the government paying for the medicine so the public won’t notice (leaving aside the fact that it’s their tax dollars). However, folks who actually understand basic economics note that, when the price goes up, access to drugs gets more difficult even in New Zealand, where it’s noted that some key life saving drugs have not been made available because they’re too expensive.
Back in the US, even a bunch of Congresscritters who voted in favor of giving the USTR fast track authority appear to be having a bit of buyer’s remorse as they’ve asked the USTR to explain why it appears the current draft of the TPP will make drugs more expensive rather than less.
And even the AARP has stepped in to point out that it appears the TPP is going to make it more difficult for the US elderly to afford drugs.
How can the USTR and the Obama administration continue to insist that the TPP is in the public interest when it’s abundantly clear that it’s in the pharmaceutical companies’ interests instead?